On This Day in 1884, Cotton Centennial

The World's Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition, New Orleans, 1884-85

December 16, 1884 marked the opening day of The World’s Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition. The Cotton Planter’s Association chose to commemorate the first recorded shipment of cotton from the United States to England, which happened in 1784, at the World’s Fair that year in New Orleans.

Special Collections & Archives has several books commemorating the Exposition. The World’s Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition, New Orleans, 1884-85 describes the opening ceremony and exhibits in the fair. Each state in the U.S. (of which there were 38 at the time), the 7 territories (Arizona, Dakota, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Washington, Wyoming), and 17 foreign nations (of which the Mexico exhibit was particularly lauded) had its own exhibit, and there were also dedicated  exhibits on the government, education, women, people of color, the railway, horticulture, art, and livestock.

Catalogue of the art collection describes the art on display at the exhibition and includes prices.

Finally, Map of the city of New Orleans showing location of exposition grounds and all approaches thereto by land & water shows the exhibition’s locations around the city as well as drawings of some of the exhibition buildings. Special Collections & Archives’ copies are very fragile, but the map is digitized and available online in David Rumsey’s Map Collection, Harvard University’s Digital Maps Collection, the University of Milwaukee’s American Geographical Society Library – Maps Collection, and Wikimedia Commons (shown below). Most of the exhibition took place in what is now Audubon Park.

There are many more items related to the Cotton Centennial in the Louisiana Digital Library, including LSU’s  New Orleans Centennial Exposition Stereoscopic Views collection.

A Louisiana "Swamp Angel," G. & S. Building, from New Orleans Centennial Exposition Stereoscopic Views, LOUISiana Digital Library, Baton Rouge, La.

You can view the three books detailed above in the Booth-Bricker Reading Room in Special Collections & Archives, Monroe Library, Monday-Friday 9am-4:30pm.

Sounds of New Orleans Opera

We’ve blogged previously about the newly processed New Orleans Opera Association Archives and our exhibit, Encore! Encore! Bravi! Presenting the New Orleans Opera Association Archives many times now, but did you know you can also HEAR historic recordings of the New Orleans Opera?

Thanks to the generosity of the Center for Louisiana Studies at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Special Collections & Archives has recordings of excerpts from three NOOA performances available on Soundcloud and youtube:

These represent only a small fraction of the audiovisual materials available in the New Orleans Opera Association Archives. The collection contains ~500 reel-to-reels and ~100 visual media (VHS, Betacam, and more) that are in danger of deterioration. Contact archives@loyno.edu for more information about our digitization program.

Christmas at Loyola

It’s holiday season at Loyola! Enjoy these photos (some with a little embellishment from our resident gif-makers) of Christmas at Loyola in years past.

Marquette Christmas Lights

Students assembling nativity scene, 1959

Student Christmas choir, 1950s

Santa and children on a school bus, 1950s/1960s

1950s Christmas gathering

Santa "shhh"ing kids on Loyola of the South bus, 1950s/1960s

Children carol singing in manger, 1950s

Carol singing in the Marquette Hall horseshoe, 1950s

Snow at Marquette Hall manger

These photos and many more like them can be found in the University Photographs Collection in the Louisiana Digital Library. And check out our many animated gifs on Giphy!

Monroe Library says “relax”

Need a break from studying and writing papers? Come to the Relaxation Station on the first floor of the Monroe Library to color or do puzzles. By concentrating on a creative and challenging task for just 15 minutes, your mind is temporarily removed from the stress of essays and exams.

Relaxation Station sign

partially colored wildflowers book

completed coloring pages of birds

partially colored birds book

The Relaxation Station is on your immediate left when you come in the front entrance of the library.

Want to setup your own Relaxation Station at home? Special Collections & Archives and Marketing & Communications both have coloring books available for you to download and print:

Color Your Way to Loyola

Excerpts from the University Archives

Johann Gottlieb Mann’s Germany’s Wild Medicinal Plants

John Gould’s Birds of Great Britain

Surprise! Cookies!

Pop-up cookie parties are coming! The next time you’re in the library you just might look up to see a plate of homemade cookies coming your way…

Keep your eyes open starting December 8th! Happy studying!

Fun with protective enclosures!

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This week, I have enjoyed making a number of custom-fitting enclosures for books related to Louisiana history in Special Collections and Archives. Today I created two identical 4-flap enclosures for both volumes of Charles Gayarré’s La Louisiane. The two books lack sturdy covers, and without proper protection the pages are at risk of deterioration on the shelf. I was able to streamline my measuring process since the books were the same size (woohoo!) I use a strip of paper to measure the thickness, height and width of the book(s), which prevents needing to use the actual books as measuring devices. Using simple tools such as an x-acto knife, a straight-edge, a bonefolder, scissors, double-sided tape, and my measuring strip, I cut one vertical component and one horizontal component out of heavy archival folder-stock. Cutting 2 components allows me to fold with the grain-direction of the folder stock, and this gives me clean, crisp folds that stay flat. I then adhere both components together in the center with archival double-sided tape. I like to secure these enclosures by cutting a tab that fits into a slit on the cover – this prevents my from needing any strings or buttons, which can sometimes damage other books on the shelf (and saves materials!)

Stay tuned for future descriptions and tutorials as we await new and exciting preservation/conservation supplies here in Special Collections and Archives! Yay box-making!

Good luck, students!

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As the library bustles this week with students preparing their final papers and studying for exams, we at SCA want to wish our undergrads the best of luck in these last few days before the holiday break. Feel free to study with us in the Booth-Bricker Reading Room — we are always happy to assist with your research needs!

Collection Spotlight: Gulf Restoration Network Archives

Interested in learning more about Louisiana’s waterways and their environmental history? The Gulf Restoration Network Archives are a great place to conduct such research. The Gulf Restoration Network was formed in 1994 by environmental groups, conservationists and activists in New Orleans dedicated to the study of ecological sustainability along the Gulf of Mexico.  From the collection finding aid: (The Gulf Restoration Network) has focused on three areas of work: fostering sustainable management of fisheries; stopping polluted run-off that results in the Gulfs Dead Zone; and opposing Corps of Engineers policies that destroy wetlands. It reports on its work in the quarterly newspaper GRN NEWS, which includes the insert Fish Tales. The collection is arranged alphabetically by subject and dates roughly between 1995 and 2001. It consists mainly of correspondence, grants and proposals, and sign-ons and comments. It also contains considerable materials related to the Dead Zone, fisheries and Corps of Engineers projects.

Featured below is one of many spiral-bound reports affiliated with the GRN archives. This particular report is dated from September 1973 and addresses the economic and environmental impacts of industry along Louisiana’s waterways.
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Learn more about this collection in the SCA Booth-Bricker Reading Room on the third floor of Monroe Library!

12-3-1947: A Streetcar Named Desire on Broadway

Prior to its opening night on Broadway, the Tennessee Williams play had a brief stint at the Shubert Theatre in New Haven, Connecticut, but eventually made a home at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre in New York City from December 3, 1947 – December 17, 1949. The stage production starred Marlon Brando as Stanley Kowalski and Jessica Tandy as Blanche DuBois.

In 1978, Susan Snowden Palmer sat down with Tennessee Williams in Atlanta, Georgia during the rehearsal of his play Tiger Tail. The interview was published in issue 1, volume 6 of the New Orleans Review.

In the interview, Williams discusses his experiences with the various adaptations of his plays. The focus of the interview is on Tiger Tail, but he goes into detail about what gets censored in film adaptations versus stage adaptations and how different each individual adaptation is unique. Williams acknowledges that he has no way of knowing whether or not his then-new play will live up to the successes of A Streetcar Named Desire and The Glass Menagerie, but he didn’t seemed too worried.

Read the full article and interview from the Loyola University New Orleans J. Edgar and Louise S. Monroe Library Digital New Orleans Review Collection (pg 31-33) or the New Orleans Review digital archive (pg 28-30).

To see more of the New Orleans Review digital collection check the Monroe Library Special Collections & Archives and to see more from the New Orleans Review, including recent web features and to purchase the most recent issues, go to the New Orleans Review website and Twitter.

Posted by student worker Samantha.

Madama Butterfly

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If you were bored 54 years ago, you could have gone and seen Madama Butterfly at the New Orleans Opera this time of year! It’s an Italian opera centered around romance and honor. The synopsis from this website is posted below,

“This tragic tale revolves around the young Japanese geisha, Butterfly. She is to be married to Pinkerton, an American Officer on assignment in Nagasaki. Butterfly is young and naive, and fully believes her marriage to Pinkerton to be true and everlasting, while Pinkerton intends on marrying an American when he returns home. Butterfly waits for Pinkerton to return, having had a child by him that he does not know about. He returns, but with his new American wife, intending to take the child back to America. Rather than live in shame, Butterfly agrees to give up her child, but intends to kill herself out of honor. She kills herself to save the honor of her family, and for love.”

The last performance by the New Orleans Opera was in 2013, so it is quite possible to see it once again on their stage in the future. Even though it isn’t playing now, you should still check out the New Orleans Opera, because they have a bunch of amazing performances coming up.

If you would like to see this pamphlet from 1964, it is located in the New Orleans Opera Association Archives in Special Collections & Archives. We are also currently digitizing all of the programs in the collection; so far, you can see programs from 1943-1963 in the New Orleans Opera Association Archives in the Louisiana Digital Library. You can ALSO see more items like this in the Booth-Bricker Reading Room in Special Collections & Archives in our current exhibit, Encore! Encore! Bravi! Presenting the New Orleans Opera Association Archives.

Happy holidays!

This blog was written by student worker Miranda.